Editorials

THE TEN BEST BEARDS IN METAL

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Few things are more metal some well styled mountain-man facial hair; it tells everyone who sees you that you’re primitive, barbaric, above society’s norms, and not to be fucked with. Herein, we present the ten best beards in metal today.

#10 – ROBERT FLYNN of Machine Head
Now, normally, when you think of a real metal beard or goatee, you think of something long and unruly- the kind of facial hair that will make airport security think twice before allowing you to board your flight. Flynn’s face whiskers, obviously, don’t have these qualities. What Flynn lacks in length, he more than makes up for in creativity. Do you see those crazy triple spikes? That shit doesn’t groom itself- it takes MAINTENANCE. Props to Flynn for finding the time to trim when most metal musicians can’t find the time to shower.

#9 – MARK MORTON of Lamb of God
This photo doesn’t really do justice to just how big n’ bushy Mr. Morton’s face pubes have gotten as of late. The Bible tells us of Samson, a man whose hair held incredible power- until his two timing bitch, Delilah, cut it all off, taking his balls with it. Well, like the mighty Samson, as Morton’s hair grows, so do his powers: he’s always been a killer guitarist, but surely it can be no coinky-dink that bearded Morton is a more well-rounded player than clean-shaven Morton. It’s only a matter of time before he rivals the burliest of the burly, for now, he has to settle for the number nine spot.

#8 – ROBIN FINCK of Guns N’ Roses
Hard to believe that just a few years ago Finck was sporting a completely different, more goth-orienteted style (MTV’s Kurt Loder once described him as looking like Marilyn Manson, if Marilyn Manson died and some rats feasted on his corpse); when Finck took the stage last year for the first of GN’R’s warm-up shows at the Hammerstein Ballroom here in NYC, I almost didn’t recognize him. The template here is clearly more hippie than metal (Finck looks like the lost cousin of The Black Crowes’ Chris Robinson), and Finck usually has the appearance of a man who hasn’t bathed in ages (wearing the same stage clothes on such a regular basis doesn’t help), but the sheer size of his beard earns him a spot here.

#7 – TROY SANDERS of Mastodon
What the fuck IS that thing hanging from Troy’s chin? It’s like it’s cool, but didn’t quite come in right, and it’s not really a goatee but not really a beard… I find it so yucky, and, yet, I’m in such awe of it… I don’t know what you’d even call this style other than “filthy,” but it’s unique and highly admirable. The way it dangles, thinning as it closer and closer to Sanders’ chest, is suggestive, almost obscene; Freudians, I’m sure, would have a field day with what can only be called a chin-cock. Still…

#6 – BRENT HINDS of Mastodon
…Sanders is bested by his bandmate and co-lead singer, Hinds, who, like Mark Morton, has seen his beard size steadily increase over the past few years. Hinds shows a true commitment to both artistic and facial hair growth, and he deserves extra respect for being the only ginger on the list- to say nothing of the fact that he’s one of those bizarre dudes who beard is a different color than his head hair. It’s also perfectly shaped into a letter “V,” which, as all metalheads knows, is ideal for maximum effect when trying to invoke the original metal-bearded one himself, Satan.

#5 – SCOTT IAN of AnthraxIan seems to be invoking the pharaohs with his staff-style goatee (the French call it L’Egyptian), which sorta works for him because, as a Jew, his people were, once upon a time, slaves to the Egyptians. Ian, as you may know, is engaged to Meat Loaf’s daughter, and I always have to wonder what the Bat Out of Hell thought they first time he met his future son-in-law and saw this giant caterpillar dangling from his chin. Recently, Ian’s been dying the lower portion of the goat in an apparent tribute to his fallen friend and facial-hair extraordinaire, Dimebag Darrell. The sheer length of Ian’s beard is a constant reminder that he is truly one of the all-time legends of metal.

#4 – FREDRIK ANDERSSON of Amon Amarth
Four things Vikings are good at: raping, pillaging, metal, and big fucking beards. I mean, look at that fucking thing! I bet Andersson was born with it. I bet where he comes from, whoever has the biggest beard gets to rule over all the land with an iron fist, and has virgins brought to him on a nightly basis to soothe all his manly man’s needs. I bet it smells like mead and stinky vagina. That is a fucking BEARD, bro. Long live the Viking Gods of Metal, may they smile upon us all.

#3 – CHRIS ADLER of Lamb of God
Have you ever seen that Skittles commercial where the dude is on a job interview and his beard reaches across the table and steals the other dude’s candy? Yeah, well, that guy was modeled on Chris Adler. Seriously, that fuckin’ thing has a mind of its own. The cuverture, the perfect shape, the way Adler has left himself room to style it in a variety of different ways, sometimes rubberbanding it to look like two beards, sometimes allowing it fly free like the beautiful creature it is- it a truly magnificent specimen!

#2 – KERRY KING and ZAKK WYLDE (tie)
The most metal of the metal, the shreddiest of the shredders, these are two bad-ass motherfuckers you wouldn’t wanna meet in a dark alley. King (of Slayer fame- duh) looks like the kinda guy who has rotting corpses hidden under his floorboards, proving why time and again he’s cited as the very personification of METAL; why, once, Dave Mustaine tried to fuck with him, and his beard bitch-slapped Mustaine until he cried like a little girly-man. As for Wylde (Ozzy/Black Label Society- again, if you don’t know that, go read Brooklyn Vegan), well, little wonder he was voted this year’s “Sexiest Man” by Revolver magazine. When he runs out of toilet paper, he wipes his ass with beard; when he has a cold, he blows his nose into it; when he’s tired, he lets it take an extended guitar solo; and when he’s lonely, he makes sweet, sweet love to it. Justin Timberlake can suck a bag of dicks; Zakk Wylde is bringin sexy BACK, motherfuckers.

#1 – DIMEBAG DARRELL of Pantera/Damageplan
The late, great, Dimebag Darrell, arguably the best guitarist of his generation, was famous for his red beard and single-handidly brought the caveman look back into fashion. Scott Ian once told a story about being at Dime when a goat suddenly walked casually through the living room, its own goatee dyed to match Dime’s; when Ian asked about it, Dime said a fan had dropped it off and left it outside his home, so, naturally, he HAD to dye the beard. That kind of fun-lovin’ attitude and pride in the bizarre biological fact that men sprout hair from their every pore is part of what made Dime so fuckin’ special. Little wonder Wylde and King were his best friends. Dime will always be remembered for his guitar playing, and he’ll always be remembered for his most metal of beards.

Of course, there are plenty of others coming up on the tails of these barbarian-bearded bastards: GN’R’s Ron “Bumblefoot” Thal actually takes the time to shave his facial hair into stick figures, Metallica’s James Hetfield has an on-again, off-again face coif, Chimaira’s Jim LaMarca’s beard is getting longer and scragglier seemingly by the hour, that dude from Daath is going the Scott Ian-Middle Easter route, and Justin Foley, Mike D’Antonio and Joel Stroezel (all of Killswitch Engage fame) have combined their powers to grow a collective metalcore forest of facial hair. Keep reading MetalSucks.net for the up-to-the-minute updates on metal beardery…

-AR

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